Guardian Angel? - Divine Intervention?
DEADLY SNAKE STRIKES
True Miracle Story From Congo Bush
By Georgia Mae Dearmore - Copyright 1998
JOHN DEARMORE AND BLACK MAMBA IN CONGO
"How God Cares For Us From Day To Day, Often In Ways Unknowable to Us"
In the early days when my husband, Jim, surrendered to go to the Mission Fields of Africa we traveled to Wichita Falls to one of our churches to speak, seeking missions support.
We (that is myself, Georgia, and our three children, Jamie, Becky and John) did not travel very much on long trips with my husband, because it cost so much more to travel that way, and because the children needed to be in School. But because we were not so far away I took the children with me, and went with Jim on a speaking trip to Wichita Falls, Texas.
Several of the Ladies at the Church there asked me - "How can you take these little children to the troubled country of Congo, Africa. Are you really going to take these little children into that dangerous part of the world?" I answered quickly and plainly, "Yes, I am."
This was in the days when there was much trouble in Africa . . . . especially during the time when the memory of the Mau-Mau uprising in Kenya was very strong. There was a lot of killing, burning houses, mutilating domestic animals and mutilating white people in the most horrible ways possible, assaulting women, pillaging, etc.
I replied to our friends: "God has promised He would take care of us, even our children. We and they, will be safer there in God's will, than to stay in "safety" here in the USA, out of God's will and way for our lives."
And with this assurance and His leading, after Jim had finished deputation, we were soon packed and flying across the Ocean to the shores of Africa. We landed in Leopoldville, the Capital city of Congo, a large city on the banks of the Congo River.
We spent the night at the "Mission House" (which was a sort of "boarding house" for missionaries traveling through, and were later met by Roy with a truck, and soon after by MAF.
Missionary Aviation Fellowship is a specialist Bush Charter Flying Service for missionaries in various parts of the world. They were very helpful to us in the early days in Congo.
We flew over the jungles and African bush, and the muddy rivers on our way to our mission point out in the African bush. (Just the children and Georgia flew out on the small plane to the bush, and Jim and Roy followed a few days later in the "Power Wagon" truck with a big load of supplies).
Most of this story is about our youngest son, however. Both of our sons picked up the language quickly and became friends with the young African boys. John, our youngest soon became friends with the young boys and was often out hunting with them for birds. They were not "hunting for fun" but were hunting for food for the little Africans.
This food for them was very important, for they were always hungry, and were always desperately short on protein in their diets. They often ate rats, flying ants, caterpillars, palm tree grub worms, snakes, and any kind of wild game they could trap or kill.
Once in a while they would be able to kill or trap a small crocodile, or some fish from the river, or an occasional monkey or porcupine, and they ate birds of almost any kind they could kill or trap.
John and his friends were walking single file down a trail through the bush, hunting for meat for his little African friends. They had spotted some birds in a tree off to the side of the trail, and they were walking along on this little, narrow footpath slowly, slowly, quietly trying to get closer to the birds, all the while watching the birds in the tree, instead of watching the narrow pathway they were creeping along, to get a shot at the birds with a "slingshot."
While creeping along like this, and watching the bird he was hoping to shoot, John stepped right on a deadly Black Mamba snake, one of the most deadly snakes in the Bush. The Black Mamba was sometimes called the "African Two-Step." It was so deadly poisonous that sometimes just a few steps and you were down, or so it seemed.
However, God's promises are true, and His loving care and protection of His own is endless, and always sufficient. Just before John stepped on the snake, the Lord had sent along a bush rat. God had also made the snake hungry at the right time, and the snake had just caught the rat and was slowly swallowing it when John stepped directly on the deadly snake.
The rat was only about half way down the snake's throat, and about half of the rat was still hanging out of the snake's mouth, so that when the snake reared up and struck our son John on his leg near the knee, (the rat being still in the mouth of the snake) the snakes fangs could not pierce our sons skin, and therefore our son was safe.
John and his little African friends quickly killed the snake, of course. And our son was not harmed. So here in this true story, we have an example of how God cares for his own, when they are in his will and doing his work. (Of course, He also cares for us sometimes when we are not in His perfect will as well, but that is for another story, and another time!)
But now, just think about what all was involved in saving John's life here with that little bush rat in the mouth of the deadly Black Mamba snake, far out in the remote African bush!
"What if" John had come along 5 minutes earlier than he did; the snake might not have had the rat in his mouth, and could have struck our son with his fangs, which would have been almost certain death?!
Or "what if" the little rat had not come along when he did, so that the snake would catch him, and have his fangs blocked by the rat hanging out of his mouth when he struck John?
Or "what if" the snake had not been hungry and hunting when the rat came along, therefore he did not take the rat, and would have then been able to get his fangs into John's leg when he struck him?
Or "what if" the rat had come along much earlier, the snake had taken him, and had already swallowed him before John came along, and then the snake would again have been able to get his fangs into John's leg?
What if -- what if -- what if? But I'm so glad that our God even takes care of the "what if's" in our lives!
When we finally heard about this story from our son, John, my thoughts flew across the ocean to the time in Wichita Falls, and I remembered how God's promises and loving care are always sure and steadfast.
The African tribal life in the Bush is a very hard life, especially for the women and the little girls. A three year old girl or even younger is already taking care of the new babies, going down to the river to wash their clay pots, carrying up wood for the fires and washing their clothes on the rocks , always watching out for the snakes and crocodiles.
They so loved Sunday School, and my, how they could sing when we taught them songs or choruses in their own languages.
One of their favorite songs was: "Jesus Loves The Little Children." The title of the song is "Yesu Zola Bana Fioti" in the Kikongo language, and the song goes like this:
Yesu zola bana fioti,
Bana yonso ya ntoto,
Mbwaki, Ndombe, ye Mpembe,
Yesu zola bau yonso,
Yesu zola bana fioti ya ntoto.
Then repeat the words again a second time, all to the tune of "Jesus Loves The Little Children."
Jesus truly does love the little Children of the world, and freely gave His life a ransom for many. He gave Himself, dying on the Cross of Calvary, shedding His precious blood, in order that all who will believe in Him, repent of their sins, and come to Him in simple, child-like faith, can be saved and have eternal life in Him.
In the Kikongo language, "Yandi kufwaka, nde beto tavanda na moyo mvu ya mvu mu Yandi." In English, that means, "He died that we might have eternal life in Him."
John 3:16 tells of God's love for man when it says: "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
To those who read this story, I ask one question: "Do you know Jesus as your Saviour and Lord?